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Our Current Missions

From Your Missions Committee

January, 2023

The Christmas Fund collection in January 2023 Despite the name Christmas Fund, your missions committee will collect your offerings during the month of January to support those who serve our churches and are facing financial difficulties. The Christmas Fund is one of the three United Church of Christ special collections. Please give generously as more of our veterans of the cross face these uncertain times. You can make donations to the Christmas Fund by mailing your check made out to Leverett Congregational Church (write “Christmas Fund” in the memo line), PO Box 324, Leverett MA 01054 OR write "Christmas Fund" in the comments of an online donation at https:// www.leverettcongregationalchurch.org/donate

 

Christmas Meals

Our congregation so generously has helped many families to gather around a table of bounty and celebrate Christmas. For this Christmas we collected $840 in food gift cards to support those in need, an impressive amount despite the short timeframe. What a wonderful thought, knowing we’ve given people an unexpected lift during these difficult times of inflationary food prices.

 

Adopt-a-Family of Franklin County.

With our impressive donations totaling $1,435, we have given families in need the means to have a memorable and joyful Christmas. Imagine the families whose circumstances suddenly change, forcing them into a shelter, not knowing how they will give their children any semblance of a Christmas. Because we joined together, these are just some of the kinds of families, especially the children, whom we have given the gift of Christmas joy. In past years this program has supported upwards of 500 families and their children.

CNC Children's Closet

FREE children's clothing, coats, hats, diapers, books, and more! We still have some snow pants and received a donation of new, small mittens. We are looking for winter boot donations! The Community Network for Children site is typically open on Thursdays from noon - 4:00 p.m.. Please make an appointment to visit by email (budine@erving.com) or calling/texting Gillian Budine at 413-422-0170. The CNC Children's Closet is located in the church parsonage (Dixon House), 4 Montague Rd, Leverett. Meals on Wheels Your missions committee will report on the Candlelight Service collection for Meals on Wheels in our next newsletter.

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December, 2022

Christmastime is always the busiest for so many organizations asking for donations to support their causes, their programs, and services. With so many worthy causes to support, please choose the needs that speak most to you and your plans for giving this Christmas season.

 

Community Network for Children (CNC) The Children's Closet, at the Dixon House, still needs WATERPROOF/ Resistant mittens and gloves. Call/text Gillian at 413-422- 0170 with questions or to make an appointment to shop for FREE! Children’s clothes, diapers, baby items, and more; as well as local information and resources.

 

Christmas Meals Together we collected $300 of cards that helped families in need with Thanksgiving celebrations. Families who received your gift cards send along their heartfelt thanks! You can still bring the joy of a Christmas holiday meal by donating Big Y or Stop & Shop FOOD GIFT CARDS (or you can offer cash for your Missions Committee to buy gift cards for you).

 

We need your cards or donations by Sunday, December 11. Make checks out to Leverett Congregational Church, write CNC on the memo line for the collection plate, or mail to PO Box 324, Leverett MA 01054. Or you can donate online at https://www.leverettcongregationalchurch.org/donate and write CNC on the comments line.

 

Adopt-a-Family of Franklin County This year we can continue our support through our cash donations that Adopt-a-Family will convert into gifts or cards and distribute to families by need. Last year your generous donations brought unexpected joy to the lives of hundreds of local families. The need continues to grow as we face these challenging economic times. 

Please send your contributions by Sunday, December 11 (yes, this is happening very quickly due to timing) so your contributions can reach families in time for a more joyous Christmas. Make checks out to Leverett Congregational Church, write Adopt on the memo line, put into the collection plate or mail to PO Box 324, Leverett MA 01054. Donate online at  https://www.leverettcongregationalchurch.org/donate write Adopt on the comments line.

 

Meals on Wheels of Franklin County The Candlelight Service collection will go to Meals on Wheels, as is our tradition of supporting this organization, so important to our community. For those who are homebound, Meals on Wheels can be a lifeline. Someone checks in daily, a connection to the outside world. And they deliver healthy meals. Make checks payable to Leverett Congregational Church with Meals on Wheels on the memo line or deposit your cash in the offering plate on your way in or out of the church on December 23.

 

Neighbors in Need – THANK YOU! You contributed approximately $720, nearly double last year’s. Your overwhelming generosity supports the Council for American Indian Ministry (CAIM) as well as a variety of justice initiatives, advocacy efforts, and direct service projects. We know our funds along with the other churches’ will go a long way toward projects this year to help recent immigrants. Well done!

November, 2022

Neighbors in Need (NIN) is a special mission offering of the United Church of Christ that supports ministries of justice and compassion throughout the United States. One-third of NIN funds support the Council for American Indian Ministry (CAIM). Two-thirds of this offering is used by the UCC’s Justice and Witness Ministries (JWM) to support a variety of justice initiatives, advocacy efforts, and direct service projects through grants. Neighbors in Need grants are awarded to UCC churches and organizations doing justice work in their communities. These grants fund projects whose work ranges from direct service to community organizing and advocacy to address systemic injustice.

 

In 2020, the NIN focus was on providing grants to programs that support our children: programs run by local churches and other organizations at the ground level, providing food, education, and health care to our under-served children.

 

In 2021, the focus was on those people we refer to as the homeless by offering support and grants to local organizations and churches.

 

This year, special consideration will be given to projects focusing on serving our immigrant neighbors and communities.

 

You can make donations to NIN by check made out to Leverett Congregational Church (write “NIN” in the memo line), in the collection plate or via USPS: PO Box 324, Leverett MA 01054, or online write "NIN" in the comments of an online donation at https://www.leverettcongregationalchurch.org/donate

 

When we contribute collectively, we have an impact. We provide resources that can help ministries of justice and compassion reach those most in need of our support. Community

 

Network for Children (CNC)

The Children's Closet is in need of WATERPROOF/ Resistant mittens and gloves. The Closet has been busy on Thursday afternoons! Many thanks for any and all support.

Gift Cards for Thanksgiving/Christmas Meals is a collection to help less fortunate local families celebrate the family tradition of sharing a bounteous meal during the holidays. This year inflation has made providing nutritious meals a true challenge for those who are struggling economically. We will be collecting gift cards from Stop & Shop and Big Y (your choice) to empower those in need to choose the food that will make them happiest. Your generosity will go a long way to spread the joy of the seasons. We will be collecting gift cards for holiday meals through November and mid-December. You can put the gift cards in the Missions mailbox in the church vestibule or hand to Claudia Gere (or Rich Connelly in her absence). Your Missions Committee will also convert your cash donations into food gift cards if you prefer:

 

Make checks out to Leverett Congregational Church, write CNC on the memo line, and put into the collection plate or mail to PO Box 324, Leverett MA 01054.

 

Donate online at https://www.leverettcongregationalchurch.org/donate write CNC on the comments line.

 

CROP Hunger Walk raised $620 (compared to your generous donations of $390 last year) to provide resources that help alleviate world hunger and provide safe drinking water. Kim Mohlar, Lee Barstow, and Claudia Gere participated in this year’s walk in Greenfield on October 2. Twenty-five percent of the funds raised go to local resources such as the Food Bank of Western Massachusetts. Following Jim Perkins’ sermon about his sojourn to the flooddevastated region of Kentucky and the lack of healthy meals, just as our walking supports initiatives locally, so will the donations collected by the many churches in Kentucky who participated. The call-to-action for the Lexington, Kentucky, walk: “Our community WALK is for all concerned people wanting to 'do something' for all our Kentucky and global neighbors struggling with hunger and poverty.” When we walk together, we have a local and worldwide impact that is far greater than any of us could achieve alone.

 

October,  2022

CROP Hunger Walk, Sunday October 2

The CROP Hunger Walk is one of the most impactful ways we can contribute to the ongoing efforts to reduce hunger throughout the world, provide fresh drinking water and establish sustainable farming. This coming together of so many local churches turned even the smallest of contributions into 5.9 million dollars raised in 2021. While, our funds benefit the hungry and thirsty around the world, 25 percent of the proceeds are returned to aid Franklin County food assistance programs. Please support this year’s walkers: Kim Mohlar, Lee Barstow, and Claudia Gere, cash or check made out to CWS CROP. OR online at https://events.crophungerwalk.org/2022/ team/leverett-congregational-church. Scroll down to the invitation to support the Leverett Congregational Church team. You are welcome, of course, to join us on our walk.

When and Where:

Sunday, October 2, registration begins at 1 p.m. and the walk at 2 p.m., starting and ending at Greenfield United Methodist Church at 25 Church St. It’s OK if your donation comes in after that.

 

Leverett Police and Fire Department

Townwide Tag Sale, Saturday, October 8 The Leverett Congregational Church will host a table on Saturday, October 8, 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. at the Leverett Elementary School to support the Community Network for Children.

 

Calling for baked goods, farmers market produce, and any other goodies of your choosing. You can contribute by dropping off your goods the morning of the event, or we’ll be happy to pick up your donation the day or evening before; to arrange for pickup, please contact Claudia Gere, Claudia@ClaudiaGere.com, 413-359-0003 (text or call).

July-August 2022

Community Network for Children (CNC)

The CNC office and programs will be on break beginning June 27 and will resume a summer schedule on July 11. CNC staff can be reached by email, phone call, text (413-422-0170) or message away! Please reach out with any questions! After July 11,

The CNC Children's Clothing Closet is OPEN by APPOINTMENT ONLY on Thursdays, 12-4 p.m.  If you can’t make Thursdays, then please contact them to arrange another time. They have LOTS of clothing for newborn to elementary age children all for FREE! In addition, they have diapers for those who need some to get them through the month. They can distribute a package of diapers to families once a month. They are currently accepting clothing for warm weather. Please contact them to reserve a time to visit, call/text (413) 422-0170.

 

June 2022

The CNC Children's Clothing Closet

The Children's Closet is OPEN by APPOINTMENT ONLY on Thursdays, 12-4 p.m. If you can’t make Thursdays, then please contact them to arrange another time. They have LOTS of clothing for newborn to elementary age children all for FREE! In addition, they have diapers for those who need some to get them through the month. They can distribute a package of diapers to families 1x a month. They are currently accepting clothing for warm weather. Please contact them to reserve a time to visit, call/ text (413) 422-0170. Approximately 20 families attended the CNC Children’s Clothing Closet OPEN HOUSE at the Dixon House this past May. With warm weather around the corner, many took advantage of the free clothing available and the camaraderie of other families with young children.

UCC One Great Hour of Sharing (OGHS)

Your generous OGHS donations of $415 will help support Ukrainians in their effort to maintain their independence, as well as providing support for the many refugees, draughtstricken areas of Africa, and many other area of need around the world.

May 2022

Community Network for Children (CNC)

The CNC Children's Clothing Closet NEW HOURS—The Children's Closet is OPEN byAPPOINTMENT ONLY on Thursdays, 12-4p.m. If you can’t make Thursdays, then pleasecontact the CNC to arrange another time. They have LOTS of clothing for newborn toelementary age children all for FREE! In addition, they have diapers for those who need someto get them through the month. They can distribute apackage of diapers to families 1x a month. They are currently accepting clothing for warm weather. Please contact them to reserve a time to visit,call/text (413) 422-0170.

CNC Open House

Mark your calendars for the CNC Children’s Clothing Closet OPEN HOUSE, May 21, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., the Dixon House, 4Montague Rd., Leverett, to be held outside. Cancelled if raining. Come for FREE clothes. Warm weather clothing donations accepted—must be clean and in good condition. Open to all with young children, Newborn—Elementary Age. Questions? Contact Gillian Budine,Budine@erving.comor413-422-0170 call/text.

UCC One Great Hour of Sharing (OGHS)

OGHS gives us the opportunity to join approximately4,800 churches and 773,500 members of the UnitedChurch of Christ to direct financial support and ensurewe stand with vulnerable people worldwide duringtimes of crisis. Our month-long campaign will go along way to help those whom we see in the forefrontof the news, especially Ukraine, and those who aremore invisible without prominent advocates. With your contributions stillarriving, we’ll report your generosity in the June Clarion

March 2022

One Great Hour of Sharing (OGHS)

One Great Hour of Sharing receives even the smallest of offerings and brings them together in a big way to support health, education, refugee, agricultural, and emergency relief initiatives. With the world focused on the immediate humanitarian and refugee needs for Ukraine, your investment in the United Church of Christ Ministries will continue aid for the long haul. One Great Hour of Sharing is at work all year round, all around the world - sharing resources and changing lives, bringing your message of love and hope to those in need. You can make your donations throughout the month of April by check made out to the Leverett Congregational Church (write “OGHS” in the memo line), in church or by mail: PO Box 324, Leverett MA 01054. You can also donate online: https://www.leverettcongregationalchurch.org/donate and type in “OGHS” in the comments.

 

Community Network for Children (CNC)

The CNC Children's Clothing Closet—The Children's Closet is OPEN by APPOINTMENT ONLY on Thursdays or other times if needed. They have LOTS of clothing all for FREE! In addition, they have diapers for those who need some to get them through the month. They can distribute a package of diapers to families 1x a month. Currently CNC is accepting warm weather clothing — newborn through children's size 14 — that is clean and in good condition. Please call to reserve a time to visit, call/text (413) 422-0170.

 

Mark your calendars for the CNC Children’s Clothing Closet OPEN HOUSE, May 21, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., the Dixon House, 4 Montague Rd., Leverett. More details next month. CNC is a program of Erving School Union #28 of which Leverett Elementary School is a member, under the Massachusetts Department of Early Education and Care. CNC has been in partnership with the Leverett Congregational Church since 2019 for its use of the Dixon House. .

February 2022

Your missions committee knows that we ask a lot from this small but mighty congregation during the Christmas season. Thank you for giving generously, $2,034 in total. Here are the ways your donations met so many needs this season.

 

Adopt-A-Family of Franklin County

Our donation of $750 to Adopt-A-Family brought so much joy to families who otherwise faced a bleak Christmas. Having gift cards empowered these families to choose how they celebrated Christmas by providing some gifts of need and some of joy as well as their Christmas meals.

 

Meals on Wheels

Meals on Wheels has a long history of local support from our church. The organization helps those who cannot get out to shop and provide meals for themselves. The meal deliverers also provide a daily check-in to be sure the homebound are okay. These individuals might otherwise have to live in a facility, at great expense, not to mention having to leave their home. Our church raised $635 in support, which will provide a great many meals over this year.

 

Christmas Fund

The Christmas Fund has been caring for active and retired clergy and lay employees of the United Church of Christ for over 100 years, providing emergency grants, supplementation of small annuities and health premiums, and Christmas thank-you gift checks to lower-income retirees. Our congregation has given $319 this past Christmas season to continue the tradition of taking care of those in need who have served us so selflessly.

 

Community Network for Children Food Gift Cards

We raised an additional $330 in food gift cards to help families in need purchase their Christmas meal. (This is in addition to the funds raised in November for Thanksgiving dinners.) From the Community Network for Children Children's Closet The CNC Closet—Will be OPEN by APPOINTMENT ONLY on Thursdays. They have LOTS of clothing all for FREE! In addition, they have diapers for those who need to bolster their supply to get them through the month. They can distribute a package of diapers to families once a month. Please contact them to reserve a time to visit, call/text (413) 422-0170.

 

Thank You from Your Missions Committee

Claudia Gere, Chair, Rich Connelly, Mary Hankinson

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